Turning Points of 2012: Keane bags back-to-back postseason braces
The LA Galaxy lifted their fourth MLS Cup in December in large part to the goal scoring prowess of Irish forward Robbie Keane.
Keane led the Galaxy in scoring during the regular season with 16 goals and nine assists, eventually finishing fourth on the MLS goal chart. The Irishman was held without a goal in LA’s first two postseason matches, but with his team down a goal on aggregate heading into the Western Conference Semifinal second leg against the San Jose Earthquakes at Buck Shaw Stadium, the Galaxy needed him more than ever.
WATCH: Magee on Keane's brace vs SJ
And Keane answered the call in the 20th minute when he fired a laser shot from 26 yards out that sailed off the post and past San Jose goalkeeper Jon Busch to put LA level on aggregate with the Earthquakes. The Irishman struck again in the 14 minutes later when Landon Donovan was sent up field off a pinpoint pass from defender Tommy Meyer. Donovan then provided a silky touch that sliced through San Jose defense to Keane who easily rounded Busch and rolled his shot into the empty net, giving LA a 2-1 lead on aggregate, a lead that they would never relinquish, as they claimed a 3-2 series win on aggregate.
The victory sent LA through to the Western Conference Championship where they met a tough Seattle Sounders FC side, who had defeated LA 4-0 in an earlier meeting during the regular season. However, in the first leg at The Home Depot Center, Seattle proved no match for Keane. In the closing minutes of the first half, Keane took the wind from the Sounders sails as he headed a cross from Donovan into the back of the Seattle net with just seconds remaining in stoppage time. He would strike again in the 67th minute as he finished a shot from Christian Wilhelmsson, putting the cap on the Galaxy’s 3-0 victory.
As the postseason wore on, Keane continued his goal scoring run.
In the second leg of the Conference Championship at CenturyLink Field, Keane delivered the nail in the coffin with his penalty kick goal that put the Galaxy though to MLS Cup. The Irishman was not done yet, however, as he scored the third and final goal in LA’s 3-1 victory over the Houston Dynamo in MLS Cup.
Expect Keane to provide even more timely goals in 2013 and beyond as he officially signed a new multi-year contract with the Galaxy on Wednesday.
Adam Serrano is the LA Galaxy Insider. Read his blog at LAGalaxy.com/Insider. Contact him at LAGalaxyInsider@Gmail.com